LEESBURG, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Leesburg Police say they are dealing with an uptick in armed robberies over the last month and a half including at least nine reported in the city in just the past two weeks.
Lt. Joe Iozze said most of the incidents are happening in the Highway 27 corridor in or outside of businesses including retail stores, restaurants, and gas stations.
Server Sydney Williams said she was held up while leaving work at Stavros Pizza last Wednesday night. Williams said a man dressed in all black approached her and her grandmother asking for money, but then he pulled out a gun and became much more forceful with the two of them.
"He had the gun at his hip and he said, 'well in fact why don't you just give me your purse,'” said Williams, “so at that point I actually begged him and asked him are you really going to do this; I just worked a double tonight."
An employee at a near-by retailer said she was held up by two men in all black wearing masks while she was at her cash register. In that case the woman said the robbers didn’t get away with much money, but left her scared to even go to her car at night.
Iozze said some of the incidents are likely linked. He said Leesburg’s detectives are trying to determine that now and are working day and night to solve all of the robberies. He asked that the public help them in identifying the suspects in the robberies through several surveillance pictures and computer renderings posted to the Leesburg PD Facebook page.
Leesburg Police urge residents and workers in the area to take caution when walking to their cars at night and call an officer right away if they notice anyone suspicious.